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Carnival Cruise Line Close to Making two Huge Moves

The cruise line has an answer to Royal Caribbean and something you may not have expected.

As the cruise industry has continued to recover from the pandemic, all three of the major lines, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings  (NCLH) - Get Free Report, Royal Caribbean Group  (RCL) - Get Free Report, and Carnival Cruise Line  (CCL) - Get Free Report, have begun adding new ships to their fleets and making other big moves.

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings recently announced its 2024-2025 sailing schedule for its Regent Seven Seas line, as well as its line Away in Wonder, a luxurious cruise that will sail for 150 days, visiting five continents and 25 countries, all for customers who just want to completely get away from it all and lose themselves at sea.

Royal Caribbean meanwhile, has announced plans to install SpaceX Starlink internet on all of its ships, in an effort to position itself as the most WiFi-friendly cruise ship in the game. 

Of course, Carnival isn’t just going to sit back and let its competitors have all the fun. Instead of trying to compete with Royal Caribbean in terms of size, it’s opted to focus on innovating in customer service and experience.

And now, the company has announced details for two new high-end ships, which will take to the sea this year, in time for the company’s 50th anniversary.

Carnival Celebration Is Ready To Sail

Carnival has previously detailed its upcoming ship, the Carnival Celebration. It will feature the Golden Jubilee, a bar and lounge celebrating Carnival's 50 years of history, as well as high-end spa treatments, and food inspired by Miami’s Art Deco, as well as a 24-hour pizzeria.  

The company has revealed that the Celebration recently completed its first round of sea trials, sailing from Meyer Turku shipyard in Finland to Port Miami. The sailing was accompanied by a full contingent of officers, technicians and engineers, who tested the ship’s technical, mechanical and navigational systems.

“During her sea trials, Carnival Celebration underwent several tests, which are meant to determine the ship’s capability and her performance. We’ve done many maneuvering tests, such as endurance tests, steering tests, speed tests and thrusters tests. The ship performed wonderfully, and shortly, we will get her out and start cruising,” said Capt. Vincenzo Alcaras in a company statement.

In addition to announcing the completed test, the company has now announced further details about what customers can look forward to when the ship is open to the public this November for seven-day cruises. 

Celebration will include several unique zones, including a tribute to Miami called 820 Biscayne, Carnival’s home. Customers can also look forward to BOLT: Ultimate Sea Coaster, a three decks atrium, as well as the restaurant Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse, and Shaquille O’Neal’s Big Chicken, because Carnival will never let its guests suffer from a dearth of food options.

Celebration will sail year round to destinations such as San Juan, Puerto Rico, Cozumel, Mexico and Grand Turk.

Carnival Luminosa Has Officially Joined the Carnival Family

Earlier this year, Carnival announced it was acquiring the cruise ship Costa Luminosa from the Italian company Costa Crociere. As we noted at the time, “that's a sort of paper transaction because Carnival owns Costa so essentially the ship is being transferred between brands.” (Yeah, it’s confusing. Just go with it.)

Now, Carnival has announced that the acquisition has been completed, and the newly named Carnival Luminosa is officially part of the Carnival Family, as Costa Captain Nicolantonio Palombella handed over the ship to Carnival Captain Adriano Binacchi in Palermo, Italy.

“Carnival Luminosa is such an added benefit to our Fun Ship family with her unique itineraries and onboard specialties,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line in a statement. “Combining favorites from our fleet and our wonderful crew with some of Luminosa’s own fun features, this ship will surely feel like home to our guests in no time.”

Carnival Luminosa will arrive in Brisbane, Australia in November. Next year it will offer sailings from Seattle to Alaska staring in May, and the company has promised it will also go to some first-time-for-Carnival destinations.

It will serve as a sister ship to the four other Spirit-class ships, and will accommodate up to 2,826 guests and 1,050 Carnival crew members. It will include the Punchliner Comedy Club, Limelight Lounge, Piano Bar 88, Alchemy Bar, RedFrog Rum Bar, Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse, Chef’s Table, Bonsai Sushi Express, Seaday Brunch, Serenity Adult-Only Retreat, and Cloud 9 Spa, amongst other attractions.